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HiRise Camera Views Jupiter From Mars Orbit

01.02.2007
The HiRISE camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter can take interesting astronomical pictures, team scientists report today.

The High Resolution Imaging Experiment (HiRISE) based at the University of Arizona Lunar and Planetary Laboratory in Tucson has produced a view of Jupiter as seen from Mars orbit.

The scientists used the HiRISE camera to take a 10 megabyte image of Jupiter and its major satellites when they were calibrating the camera's pointing and color response on Jan. 11, 2007. The team is releasing a version of that image today on the HiRISE Webpage, http://hirise.lpl.arizona.edu.

The image successfully served its purpose for the calibration tests. However, the raw image was blurred because of an oversight in planning the unusual observation. Since, Dennis Gallagher, the HiRISE chief optical designer, formerly with Ball Aerospace, Boulder, Colo., and now with CDM-Optics in Boulder, sharpened the image.

With this sharpening, and because Mars is closer to Jupiter than Earth is, this image has comparable resolution as the Hubble Space Telescope's pictures of Jupiter, team members noted in the image caption.

The colors seen by the HiRISE camera are not those we humans would see because the camera detects light at a slightly longer wavelength that our eyes do.

The High Resolution Science Imaging Experiment (HiRISE) team, led by University of Arizona Professor Alfred S. McEwen, is based at UA's Lunar and Planetary Laboratory in Tucson. HiRISE began the science phase of the mission in November, 2006, and posts new images and captions on the Internet at http://hirise.lpl.arizona.edu every Wednesday.

More information about the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter mission is available at http://www.nasa.gov/mro. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington. Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver, is the prime contractor for the project and built the spacecraft. The HiRISE camera was built by Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corp., Boulder, Colo.

Science Contact Information
Alfred S. McEwen,
Principal Investigator,
HiRISE 520-621-4573
mcewen@lpl.arizona.edu
UA Media Contact Information
Lori Stiles, University Communications, 520-626-4402
Yisrael Spinoza, HiRISE, 520-626-7432

Lori Stiles | University of Arizona
Further information:
http://hirise.lpl.arizona.edu

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